Concrete Curing Covers: A Comprehensive Guide
Concrete curing involves maintaining a sufficient moisture level and temperature so that concrete can develop certain properties.
Concrete that is cured properly is strong, durable, seals moisture and resists wear and tear.
Concrete curing covers are an essential component in the curing process and it is important to know what concrete curing covers are and problems that you may run into so that you can select the right concrete curing cover.
How to Cure Concrete
There are three ways to cure concrete. The first method is to add water to the surface to replace the evaporating moisture and maintain water levels in the concrete.
The second method involves sealing the concrete which prevents the water from evaporating. This ensures that there is adequate moisture in the concrete as it dries.
The third method is a combination of the first two methods. The curing process is a gradual process that prevents cracking. Plastic is placed over the concrete to trap water inside which ensures gradual curing.
What are Concrete Curing Covers?
The most efficient way to cure concrete is to use a plastic cover. The covers are placed on freshly poured concrete until the concrete has a chance to dry.
Plastic concrete curing covers seal off concrete and prevent water from evaporating. Concrete curing covers help maintain a certain level of heat and protect the concrete from colder temperatures.
The covers can heat up to 110°F and can trap moisture and heat which helps to accelerate the curing process. Concrete curing covers are lightweight and provide an effective method for temporary insulation.
Covers with polyethylene properties are water-resistant and can resist punctures and tears which makes it an ideal material for concrete curing.
The cover also retains the ideal thermal temperatures, which allow concrete to achieve its required strength for durability.
Additional Uses for Concrete Curing Covers
In addition to curing concrete, concrete curing covers can work for ground and scaffolding covers. They can also be used as insulation for wherever it is needed at a construction site and reduce heating costs when heat is applied to a structure or work area.
Here are additional uses for concrete curing covers:
- Concrete curing covers can help speed up the curing process for brickwork. Using concrete curing covers can help bricks maintain an ideal temperature and allow them to set properly
- Concrete curing covers can be useful for thawing frozen grounds and melting snow. The covers are useful for projects such as driveways and patios
- Concrete curing covers are useful in preventing water pipes from freezing. You can cover the exposed parts of the pipes with the covers to prevent the pipes from freezing
- Concrete curing covers can offer general protection at worksites. Construction sites are prone to ice and water formation. Concrete curing covers can keep a work area warm and safe. General protection also helps workers prevent accidents and injuries
Problems With Concrete Curing Covers
There are a few problems that you might encounter with concrete curing covers. One problem that you may encounter is that your concrete curing cover is unreliable.
If you are working outdoors, wind can blow your cover away leaving your concrete vulnerable to various elements. A second problem that you may deal with is insulation issues.
If your cover bunches up in one spot, that can lead to poor insulation.You may also find a flimsy concrete cover that is prone to rips and tears. An additional issue that you may deal with is loading and unloading time which is an added hassle.
Lastly, if your concrete curing cover does not provide sufficient moisture, this may cause your concrete to crack, dust, scale, and craze.
How to Select the Right Concrete Curing Cover
The right concrete curing covers maintain optimal moisture content during the concrete curing process as recommended by The American Concrete Institute (ACI).
They should comply with ASTM C-171 for light reflection. Disposable, lighter weight indoor/outdoor wet curing covers hold moisture and provide constant hydration for up to seven days. Disposable products eliminate cross-contamination between slabs.
Reusable concrete curing covers should have a high water retention rate that helps maintain appropriate moisture levels during the concrete curing process.
Good concrete curing covers can be used in a variety of industries and applications and can protect against light foot traffic.
Reef Industries offers Transguard® 2000 and Transguard® 4000. Transguard® 2000 combines unpigmented non-woven polypropylene fabric to help maintain moisture with a white polyethylene membrane to minimize heat and limit evaporation. Transguard® 4000, the first patented concrete curing cover, is rugged, durable and often reused for many projects offering exceptional cost-effectiveness. Click on this link to find out more about our concrete curing covers.